The Power of Meek Leadership
Servant Leaders are Powerful
When you think of leadership and power, you probably think of those with commanding presences. They are strong spoken, outgoing, and imposing individuals who get on stage and direct the masses.
When you think of being a servant, you probably think of precisely the opposite. Servants are seen as quiet, meek, behind-the-scenes; they are the helpers.
Combining the two is a dichotomy that many don’t understand. It seems counter-intuitive to be a servant leader where you’re a helper and a director. What many don’t realize, however, is that with being a servant, comes great power.
Leading with a Focus on Others
Leadership and power go hand in hand. But as the saying goes, “with great power, comes great responsibility.” When someone in a leadership position abuses power, they generally do not last long. Think of the powerful leaders during the World War II era; some abused power and were destroyed, others used it properly and were praised.
Let’s take a look at the 4 different types of servant leaders. Some leaders will display traits from all of the types.
The Giving Leader
When you give, and you don’t expect anything in return, you build trust. Giving doesn’t have to be expensive either. In fact, most of the trust you build with your teams is done by giving them something that doesn’t cost anything.
Building employee morale can be as simple as offering coffee and snacks in the break room. These regular gifts make team mates enjoy life a little more. But even better, is giving gifts of affirmation. A “Well done!” with a high five after a job well done, not only feels good, but it literally changes the chemical balance of the brain to promote trust. Handshakes, pats on the back, and words of affirmation are free gifts that pay big dividends.
The Empathetic Leader
Empathy is understanding and acknowledging another person’s feelings. When you’re a great listener, you develop empathy for those around you. You hear what they are going through, and you have a deeper understanding for their behavior.
Do you find that you’re not as empathetic as you would like to be? It’s a skill that you can learn. Ask more open-ended questions, listen more, instead of telling the answer, as how others would solve issues, and seek the advice of those in other roles within your organization.
The Unifying Leader
Your goal in leading an organization is to unify everyone to work toward the same vision. This sounds simple enough, but often what happens is that those you are leading continue to see it as your vision, and not everyone’s vision. You must unify them and solidify that the vision and goals of the organization are theirs as well as yours.
Unity comes when everyone believes they are on the same boat. To get people there, storytelling is a powerful method to use. Not made up stories, but stories of unity, of friendship, of perseverance. They create the bonds necessary to unite people toward a common goal.
The Gracious Leader
Gratitude is a trait that many people lack. It’s surprisingly easy to be gracious for what you have, but surprisingly easier to not express gratitude. Sure it’s easy to say thanks when you receive a gift. But being gracious for the little things is where true power lies.
Your team drives the organization toward the vision. When they do a great job, do you thank them? What about a good job? What if they just do their job, day in, and day out, month after month, and year after year? Public affirmations, as well as private ones, give you power.
Big Sky Collision Center Trains Leaders in Billings
Our goal at Big Sky Collision Center is to be the best auto body repair shop in Billings. But we know that being the best at collision repair isn’t done by driving people to work harder and better. Being the best is accomplished by training everyone in the ways of leadership, giving them power, and allowing them to take ownership of their job. When they are empowered, they do their best.
While we train leaders, we’re still pretty darn good at fixing vehicles. Give us a call at 406-259-6328 and let’s get an appointment set up for you.